The best family films to watch in the BT TV PlayerJul 21 | 2 min read
There's nothing like a good sitcom to bring a smile to your face and help escape the reality of the outside world.
The British in particular have a rich history of sitcoms. Classic comedies like Only Fools and Horses and Dad’s Army are still firm favourites, their catchphrases cropping up in conversation and their funniest moments passing into TV legend.
But with so many on demand services showing these classics and more recent binge-worthy boxsets such as The Office, Peep Show and Gavin and Stacey, it's easy to miss the best shows of the last five years.
As Ghosts returns to BBC One for a fourth season on Friday, 23 September, here is our selection of the best new British sitcoms to watch right now.
The team behind CBBC’s Horrible Histories cross over into more adult territory in Ghosts, but it remains a family-friendly watch for the most part.
When Alison, played by Charlotte Richie (Fresh Meat, Call the Midwife), inherits a huge country house from a distant relative, she and husband Mike (Stath Let’s Flat’s Kiel Smith-Bynoe) decide to move in. But after a near-death experience, Alison finds she can see and communicate with the ghosts of people who died in the house or on its grounds, a group which includes a Georgian noblewoman, a disgraced MP, a romantic poet, a caveman and a scout leader killed in an archery exercise.
Husband Mike, however, cannot see or hear this motley crew, much to his annoyance.
Also stars Simon Farnaby, Katy Wix, Matthew Baynton, Jim Howick and Lolly Adefope.
Watch Ghosts series 1-3 on BBC iPlayer. Ghosts series 4 begins on BBC One on Friday 23 September.
Written by Sharon Hogan, Holly Walsh, Helen Serafinowicz and Burunka O'Shaughnessy (who replaced Graham Linehan after series 1), this sitcom delves into the murky world of the school run, with its awkward exchanges, cliques, tiger mothers and peer pressure.
All the school gate characters are here: permanently stressed working mum Julia (Anna Maxwell Martin); louche single mum Liz (Diane Morgan); Meg, the mum who seems to have it all (Tanya Moodie); annoyingly perfect ultra-popular Alpha Mum Amanda (Lucy Punch); timid and seemingly always-pregnant Anne (Philippa Dunne); and eager-to-please stay-at-home father Kevin (Paul Ready).
Away from the school pick-up, of course, nobody is quite what they seem, and across three seasons of PTA fundraisers, birthday parties and school outings the group dynamics ebb and flow.
Watch Motherland series 1 & 2 on Netflix (series 3 is currently unavailable)
Stath Lets Flats
This BAFTA award winning sitcom is written by and stars Jamie Demetriou as Stath, a Greek-Cypriot estate agent working at his father's small lettings agency, the mysteriously titled Michael and Eagle lettings, in North London.
The hilarious cast includes Sophie, played by Jamie's real life sister Natasia Demetriou (What We Do in the Shadows), Carole (Katy Wix) and Dean (Kiell Smith-Bynoe) . Whilst trying to let flats with novel descriptions and bizarre selling techniques, Stath must also do battle with rival agencies and, in the latest series, come to terms with fatherhood.
Also stars Dustin Demri-Burns, Ellie White and Nick Mohammed.
Watch Stath Lets Flats series 1-3 on All 4
We Are Lady Parts
Created by Nida Manzoor, We are Lady Parts is a sitcom about a Muslim all-female punk band.
While searching for a husband, shy PhD student and part-time guitar teacher Amina follows a hunky fellow student to an band audition. She finds herself meeting the tough, Proclaimers-singing members of We Are Lady Parts, who soon set their sights on making her their lead guitarist.
There's only one problem - Amina loses control of her bodily functions when performing in public.
Watch We Are Lady Parts on All 4
The Other One
What’s worse than a parent dying? Finding out they’ve been living a secret life with a secret family on the side.
Written and directed by Holly Walsh (who also co-wrote Motherland), The Other One stars Ellie White (Stath lets flat’s Katia) as Kathy who finds she has a half sister, Cat (played by Lauren Socha).
The two sisters are complete opposites in almost every way but their grief and circumstances bring them together in a hilarious and touching way. The cast also includes Rebecca Front (The Thick of it) and Siobhan Finneran (Benidorm, Downton Abbey).
Watch The Other One series 1-2 on BBC iPlayer
Here We Go
Created by and starring Tom Basden (After Life, Plebs), Here We Go revolves around the hapless Jessop family as seen through son Sam's ever watchful camera.
Dad Paul, played by Jim Howick (Ghosts, Sex Education) is an out-of-work Olympic archer whose schemes end up getting him into trouble and physical accidents.
Lazy daughter Amy (Feya Parks), love-lorn brother-in-law Robin (Basden) and grandmother Sue, played by comedy legend Alison Steadman, add to the mayhem, whilst mum Rachel, played by Katherine Parkinson (The IT Crowd) tries to keep everything together.
If you want more of the Jessops, a pilot, filmed in lockdown and called Pandemonium, is also available on BBC iPlayer.
Watch Here We Go series 1 and the pilot episode, Pandemonium, on BBC iPlayer
Man Like Mobeen
Guz Khan plays Mobeen, a reformed drug dealer living in inner city Birmingham. Putting his criminal past behind him, Mobeen is charged with looking after his smart teenage sister Aqsa played by Duaa Karim, and trying to be a good friend and Muslim.
But trouble - and the police - are never far from Mobeen and his odd bunch of friends and relatives. Season 4 is due to start filming this Autumn.
Also stars Tez Ilyas, Mark Silcox and Art Malik.
Watch Man Like Mobeen series 1-3 on BBC iPlayer
Written by and starring comedian Nick Mohammed, Sky's Intelligence stars sitcom legend David Schwimmer (Friends) as pompous American NSA agent Jerry Bernstein, who joins the UK's cyber crime department at GCHQ.
Having left his previous job under a mysterious cloud, Jerry is determined to take charge of this new department but his arrogance, mixed with his ineptitude, leads to him from one disaster to another. The quirky ensemble cast are pitch perfect with the highlight of the show being the unlikely friendship between Jerry and naive junior analyst Joseph (Mohammed).
Also stars Sylvestra Le Touzel, Jane Stanness and Colin Salmon.
Watch Intelligence series 1-2 on Sky Comedy with NOW
Toast of Tinseltown
Steven Toast, previously seen in Channel 4's Toast of London, moves to the US and to the BBC in the latest iteration of this surreal sitcom.
Matt Berry plays Toast, a hammy actor and voiceover artist who, after years of scraping a living in London, decides to up sticks to L.A.
On the promise of a role in Star Wars, Toast meets a series of crazy characters and finds himself in as much trouble in the States as he ever did in his home town.
Contains a wealth of celebrity cameos including Berry's What We Do in the Shadows fellow cast member Natasha Demitriou as well as Rashida Jones, Aidan Turner, Fred Armisten and Curb Your Enthusiasm's Larry David.
Watch Toast of Tinseltown - and series 1-3 of Toast of London - on BBC iPlayer.
Greg Davies is perhaps best known as the gruff host of Channel 4's Taskmaster, but he's got sitcom form after starring in The Inbetweeners, Cuckoo and his hilarious self-penned Man Down, currently available on Netflix.
In The Cleaner, written by Davies and based on the German TV show Der Tatortreiniger, he plays Wicky, a crime scene cleaner whose line of work gives him access to some strange houses and even stranger people.
While he's only there to clean up the gore, Wicky somehow manages to unravel the mystery of the crime and even solves a couple of murders. Each episode takes place in a different environment and has some pretty special guest stars including Helena Bonham Carter, David Mitchell, and Davies' mad aunty from Man Down, Stephanie Cole.
Watch The Cleaner series 1 on BBC iPlayer
Prime Video’s remake of Netflix’s French comedy Call my Agent! doesn’t stray too far from the original source material but with W1A’s writers at the helm, the show has certainly been given a very British makeover.
London talent agency Nightingale Hart faces financial difficulty after the sudden death of its founder Richard Nightingale, played by Jim Broadbent. It's up to Richard's son Jonathan (Jack Davenport) and his agents Rebecca (Lydia Leonard) and Stella Hart (Maggie Steed) to sort out the mess whilst dealing with the whims of their celebrity clientele.
The eight-episode series features cameos from Helena Bonham Carter, David Oyelowo, Dominic West, David Harewood and Himesh Patel.
Watch Ten Percent on Prime Video
Alma’s Not Normal
The pilot episode for Alma's Not Normal won the BAFTA Television award for best comedy writer in 2021 and secured Sophie Willan a six-part series for the BBC.
The semi-autobiographical comedy is written by and stars comedian Willan as Alma. Bolton-based Alma has been thrown a lot of curve balls in her life, having grown up in care, worked in the sex trade and made some bad boyfriend choices.
Nevertheless unemployed 30-year-old Alma is now trying to make the best of her life with a positive outlook, unusual spending habits and 'exotic' best friend Leanne played by Jayde Adams.
The show also stars Siobhan Finneran (The Other One), Lorraine Ashbourne (Bridgerton, Sherwood) and Dave Spikey (Phoenix Nights).
Watch Alma's Not Normal on BBC iPlayer
Samson Kayo has starred in quite a few sitcoms in recent years including ITV's time-travelling Timewasters and Prime Video's much-missed supernatural comedy Truth Seekers. He also created, wrote and starred in Dave's fast food comedy Sliced, and repeated the trick with Bloods (co-written with Nathan Bryon).
Bloods sees Kayo play Maleek, a paramedic working out of a South London hub controlled by efficient but lovelorn Jo, played by Lucy Punch (Motherhood).
Maleek's world is turned upside own when he's partnered with the enthusiastic and over-friendly Wendy, played by Jane Horrocks (Absolutey Fabulous). Self-styled maverick Maleek wants to be a lone wolf paramedic but his unfriendly exterior is worn down by Wendy's positive attitude.
Now into its second season on Sky Comedy, Bloods also stars Julian Barratt (The Mighty Boosh), Adrian Scarborough (Gavin and Stacey) and Ellie White (The Other One, Stath Lets Flats).
Stream Bloods seasons 1 & 2 on Sky Comedy with NOW
Written by Alan Partridge collaborators Neil and Rob Gibbons, this period sitcom is set in 1640s England against the cheery backdrop of Civil War and plague.
Unsuccessful witchfinder Gideon Bannister played by Tim Key (Alan Partridge's Sidekick Simon) is not having much luck when he attempts to try non-plussed suspected witch Thomasine Gooch, played by Daisy May Cooper (This Country).
But when Gideon comes across the dead body of the Witchfinder General's right-hand man he seizes his chance to take his place. Dragging a disgruntled Thomasine with him across the beseiged English countryside, Gideon must beat scheming rival witchfinder Hebble, played by Daniel Rigby, to the side of the Witchfinder General in Chelmsford.
The Witchfinder also stars Jessica Hynes (Spaced, W1A) Reece Shearsmith (The League of Gentlemen, Inside No.9) and Tuwaine Barrett.
Watch The Witchfinder on BBC iPlayer
From the unique minds of Joe Wilkinson (8 out of 10 Cats, Him and Her) and Ricky Gervais regular David Earl (Derek, After Life) comes The Cockfields, a sitcom about son Simon visiting his family on the Isle of Wight with his girlfriend, played in series 1 by Diane Morgan (Motherland, Mandy) and in series 2 by Susannah Fielding (This Time with Alan Partridge).
Simon (Wilkinson) must get through the weekend at his family home with his fussing mum, played by sitcom legend Sue Johnston (The Royle Family) and irritable stepfather, played by comedy legend Bobby Ball in series 1 and Rab C. Nesbitt's Gregor Fisher in series 2.
Nigel Havers stars as Simon's absent father, with Sarah Parish playing his scene-stealing shallow girlfriend Melissa.
Watch The Cockfields series 1 & 2 on UK Gold with NOW